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Red Star Côte des Blancs vs. Safale S-04

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sreichenberger

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Just a simple post to compare both yeasts. Please share any pros or cons (or both) for each yeast.

I just finished my first batch of 2.5 gallons (starting off with low amounts as I test ingredients out) with Côte des Blancs. It did leave a buttery taste to the Cider (and a strong taste of yeast). Not sure I would use Côte des Blancs again. The first batch is currently undergoing bottle carbonation, I am hoping that helps a bit with the taste.

Will experiment with Safale S-04 next as I hear this leave more of an Apple taste to the Cider.
 

CKuhns

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I have used both Cote Des Blanc and S04 in batches. I tend to reserve the Cote Des Blanc in fresh pressed ciders at cool fermentation temps ~50 - 55 Deg F. S04 I use when I am making cider from FAJC and target temps more near 65 Deg F.

The Cote does add some nice flavors but if clarified well I haven not had any undesirable yeast flavors. Occasionally I do get a slight ale like flavor with the S04 (could be the ale flavor is just in my head due to the name....) I think its primarily due to the flavors the FAJC provides or doesn't in this case. But have found it can be covered when balanced with some acid, oak and sometimes even a little vanilla or fruit.
 
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sreichenberger

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Thanks for the feedback, guys.

So I finally switched from Cote des Blanc to S-04.

Cote des Blanc would give be a bubbling airlock within minutes.

It's been 24 hours, and there is no activity on the fermenter with the S-04. Could a slightly higher temp (circa 28º C) be causing the yeast to go dormant? Here's how I prepped this Cider:

Added 2.3 gallons of room temp apple juice to the fermenter. Took the remaining 0.2 (total of 2.5 gallons) and brought it to a boil. Added yeast nutrients and gelatin at the 15 minutes mark as well as two tablespoons of honey. Mixed thoroughly during boil for 15 minutes and waited to cool.

Added the 0.2 apple juice to the fermenter when sufficiently cool and pitched the years at 23º C.

Could anything be wrong, or does ale yeasts typically take longer to kick in?
 

CKuhns

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I have rarely had a significant lag using S04 and 23C to 28C should be more than adequate to get it started and working.

You probably already know this but... You will stress and or kill the yeast if your starter and your must were more than say 15 Deg F different or you just pulled the yeast out of the fridge and dumped them into a room temp mixture. Either likely would not have killed them all though.

I would give it a good shake or stir and let it go another day. If still no visible fermentation like small bubbles on the surface, cloudy etc. then consider re-pitching. (Lack of Airlock activity could just mean you have a poor seal.)
 
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sreichenberger

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I have rarely had a significant lag using S04 and 23C to 28C should be more than adequate to get it started and working.

You probably already know this but... You will stress and or kill the yeast if your starter and your must were more than say 15 Deg F different or you just pulled the yeast out of the fridge and dumped them into a room temp mixture. Either likely would not have killed them all though.

I would give it a good shake or stir and let it go another day. If still no visible fermentation like small bubbles on the surface, cloudy etc. then consider re-pitching. (Lack of Airlock activity could just mean you have a poor seal.)
Just slowly opened the lit to see what the must looks like. There were a lot of bubbles on the surface of the must, which is evidence that fermentation is occurring.

I gave it a good shake and all the bubbling that hasn't occurred for the past 24 hours started to bubble. I thought the fermenter was going to explode but the airlock did its job right. Bubbling has now started normally :)

Thanks for the advice!!
 
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